Robert J. Desousa is the state director for U.S. Senator Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania. He is a lieutenant colonel in the judge advocate general’s corp of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. DeSousa served in Operation Iraqi Freedom where he earned, among other things, the Bronze Star Medal.
He has served the federal government as a law clerk and as an assistant U.S. attorney; he has served the commonwealth of Pennsylvania as chief counsel of the Department of State and as the state’s inspector general. DeSousa has been an FBA member for 20 years and with the help of several other members, he re-chartered the then-defunct Middle District of Pennsylvania Chapter and set forth an aggressive program of CLEs, judicial receptions, and membership drives. He has served in every office in the Middle District of Pennsylvania Chapter, including that of president and national delegate; has been a National Council member; a member of the Federal Career Services Division; a member of the Constitution, Bylaws, and Rules Committee; Governance Review Committee; Membership Committee; a vice president for the Third Circuit; chair of the vice presidents of the circuits; and is a Charter Sustaining Life Fellow of the Foundation of the Federal Bar Association and a sustaining member of the FBA. During his two terms as a circuit vice president, he started a chapter via phone, letters, and e-mails in the Virgin Islands. He was elected by his peers to chair of the vice presidents of the circuits. During his tenure, and with the help of his fellow vice presidents, the vice presidents increased activity while at the same time spending less dues money. The now-annual chapter presidents-elect training, training at all conferences, and updating the chapter’s leadership manual are all results of these efforts. He was awarded the Middle District of Pennsylvania Appreciation Award in 1997, the Middle District of Pennsylvania President’s Award in 2002, and a Special Recognition Award in 2002 and 2005 by the FBA president. DeSousa served for three years on the former Executive Committee of the FBA and has served on the board since its inception.